Lawrence Kohlbeg was born in Bronxville, New York on October 25, 1927. He attended the University of Chicago and received a PhD. He later went on to work at the university, as well as Yale University and Harvard University.
He was fascinated by the subject of moral judgment in children, especially boys. In order to study this, he selected 72 white male adolescence and posed to them the “Heinz Dilemma.” The Heinz Dilemma, was a hypothetical scenario on whether or not to a man should steal a life-saving mediation for his wife during dire circumstances. This method forced the children to work through difference scenarios of consequence, ethics, and human rights in order to come to a moral judgment. Through this study, he developed his Theory of Moral Development.
His influence was Jean Piaget and he went on to try and further his theories of moral development, in which Piaget had only two stages. He argued that moral development should be mandated on rational grounds instead of rules designated by an authority. In Piaget’s theory, the dilemma is between man’s own rules and society’s rules. Kohlberg’s theory was considered to be more complex and dealt with stages of development that were contingent on progressing in order of their cognitive development. There were three levels of the six stages:
The basis of Kohlberg’s stages of development progress with regards to how the child views the rules and laws of his/her environment, initially unquestioning and abiding by all rule that are laid before them. However, as their cognitive reasoning evolves, so does their ability to be able to start deducing their own moral actions based on their inner beliefs are morals they have developed, not necessarily following laws and rules in place.
There were controversies with Kohlberg’s theories and method to obtain his findings. For example, it was argued that children and adolescence wouldn’t rightfully know what decision they would make when...